Tuesday, 27 March 2012

[REVIEW] The Exiled Queen by Cinda Williams Chima

Published: September 2010
Publisher: Hyperion Book CH
Age Group: Young Adult
Series: Seven Realms #2
You can't always run from danger...

Haunted by the loss of his mother and sister, Han Alister journeys south to begin his schooling at Mystwerk House in Oden’s Ford. But leaving the Fells doesn’t mean danger isn’t far behind. Han is hunted every step of the way by the Bayars, a powerful wizarding family set on reclaiming the amulet Han stole from them. And Mystwerk House has dangers of its own. There, Han meets Crow, a mysterious wizard who agrees to tutor Han in the darker parts of sorcery—but the bargain they make is one Han may regret.

Meanwhile, Princess Raisa ana’Marianna runs from a forced marriage in the Fells, accompanied by her friend Amon and his triple of cadets. Now, the safest place for Raisa is Wein House, the military academy at Oden's Ford. If Raisa can pass as a regular student, Wein House will offer both sanctuary and the education Raisa needs to succeed as the next Gray Wolf queen.

The Exiled Queen is an epic tale of uncertain friendships, cut-throat politics, and the  irresistible power of attraction. (From Goodreads)

The Exiled Queen is the second book in the four book, Seven Realms series.

In the second book, the two main characters, Hans Allister (formerly, Cuffs Alister) and Raisa Ana'Marianna (who goes by Rebecca Morley to keep her identity a secret) both end up at Oden's Ford for school. As revealed in the last book, Hans starts training as a wizard while attempting to stay alive from the two Bayer twins. Along the way, Hans make some deals he could regret especially when he meets a mysterious wizard named Crow who seems seems to have his own ulterier motives. Raisa stays with Amon Bryne while training as a cadet. At Oden's Ford she stays hidden away but what happens when she gets found and kidnapped back to the one place she is running from? Well, the Exiled Queen is definitely not short of drama. We have a romantic relationship sproat between Hans and Raisa but for an heir princess, nothing always happens the way you think it does.

Chima does it again in this sequel to her first book, The Demon King. 

Although I will admit, this book lacks the action and life threatening moments that i enjoyed from the first book. I found this book was more focused on the character's relationships. Like I said, there's no shortage of drama, not just from Raisa but from Hans as well. 

What I really liked when reading this book was that it really is like you're reading two different stories that somehow entangle at some part in the middle and then seperate again. 

I also started to hate Amon for what he did to Raisa. His reasoning in the story is also absolutely horrible, but understandable and yet, at the same time completely ridiculous but what's to be done about that.  If you didn't read the first book, Amon and Raisa love each other but because of certain oaths and rules, Amon can't be with Raisa otherwise he gets punished. It's the Bryne legacy to always act in a way that protects the Grey Wolfe line (that's Raisa's royal line) and since they have to protect the line, Amon, as a Bryne, can't love the princess. 

This book was also really hard to get through at the end. Not because it was boring but because I didn't want to know what would happen. I wanted to stop reading and hope the character's happiness would last but of course, my curiosity got the best of me and I read it. Well all I can say is I'm glad the third book is coming out in a couple of weeks. 

If you love fantasy and action and possibly romance, give this book a try.

(originally posted in the TPL Word Out program)

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